A Swedish Ex-Mormon Just Published a Comic Book About Leaving the LDS Church

Cajsa Nordlund, an artist from Sweden, became a Mormon when she got married to one at a young age. But by age 27, she had resigned from the Church and left her husband. It was a relief in many ways.

She just published a comic book called Becoming an Ex-Mormon all about her journey out of the LDS Church, hoping that it inspires Mormons to join her on the other side.

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My Name Is Stardust: A Children’s Book About How We’re All Made of the Same Raw Ingredients

One of the neatest ideas in Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey, explained by host Neil deGrasse Tyson, was that all living things are made up of the same basic ingredients: “The planets, the stars, the galaxies, we ourselves and all of life — the same star stuff.”

It captivated an eight-year-old girl named Bailey Harris who knew she wanted to learn more about the concept. Her research, along with some guidance from her father Doug, has resulted in a new book called My Name Is Stardust:

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In His New Book, a Humanist Writes About What We Can All Learn from Jesus

When it comes to the big philosophical questions — What’s meaning of life? What’s our purpose? How can we achieve social justice for all? — where should atheists turn for advice?

Tom Krattenmaker, a writer and communications director at Yale Divinity School, has a surprising answer to that: Jesus.

Even non-religious people, he argues, can find value in His teachings. He explains how that’s possible in his aptly-titled new book Confessions of a Secular Jesus Follower: Finding Answers in Jesus for Those Who Don’t Believe (Convergent Books, 2016):

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Even Atheists in the 19th Century Couldn’t Agree On Which Word Best Described Them

Any book of the treatment of atheists throughout American history is bound to be extremely pessimistic. We were considered heretics then and we’re considered heretics now, though that’s slowly changing. But it’s worth revisiting that history just to understand how tough it was for the “New Atheists” of their time.

Washington University in St. Louis professor Leigh Eric Schmidt has looked at that history through the eyes of four outspoken critics of religion from more than a century ago, and he writes about them in a new book called Village Atheists: How America’s Unbelievers Made Their Way in a Godly Nation (Princeton University Press, 2016).

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Podcast Ep. 129: Dr. Leigh Eric Schmidt, Author of Village Atheists

Our latest podcast guest is Dr. Leigh Eric Schmidt, author of Village Atheists: How America’s Unbelievers Made Their Way in a Godly Nation.

Dr. Schmidt is the Edward C. Mallinckrodt Distinguished University Professor in the Humanities at Washington University in St. Louis. He joined the John C. Danforth Center on Religion and Politics in 2011. He previously taught at Harvard and Princeton. He has appeared in and on all kinds of media to talk about his work and he’s the author of several books.

We spoke with him about whether we were ever a “Christian nation,” why the “New Atheists” really aren’t new at all, what we can learn from a cartoonist who lived a century ago.

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